Patient monitoring as a predictor of blood culture results in a tertiary neonatal intensive care unit

Mila Orlovsky, Joachim Meyer, Alexis Mitelpunkt, Ahuva Weiss-Meilik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


We present a mesoergonomic approach to the early detection of neonatal sepsis, analyzing clinical data for 4999 patients from a neo-natal intensive care unit to predict positive culture results. The Apgar score at birth predicted positive results. For neonates with poor and intermediate Apgar scores, culture results for monitored infants were more likely to be positive than those for unmonitored infants. Thus, the medical staff tended to monitor infants who eventually had a greater chance for positive test results. A cost-effectiveness analysis indicated that for infants with high Apgar scores, the physician should decide whether to obtain a blood culture, based on the patient's characteristics. For infants with lower Apgar scores, it may be advisable to obtain a blood culture whenever one decides to monitor a neonate. The study demonstrates that staff decisions regarding a patient can serve as input for further clinical decision-making.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103233
JournalApplied Ergonomics
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Clinical decision making
  • Late onset neonatal sepsis
  • Naturalistic decision making

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)


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